Are you living the dream?

According to the FPA ‘Live the Dream’ 2017 National Research Report courtesy of, Australians are fond of dreaming about their future and are optimistic in their ability to create the life they want.

4 in 5 Australians (77%) believe in their personal ability to create the life they want but only a small 23% of us are definitely or mostly living the dream.

Interestingly, Australians who are actually living the dream are twice as likely to seek  or have sought advice from a financial planner (66%) than those who are not living the dream (38%).

So what does living the dream mean?


Living the dream to Australians mean having the lifestyle of their choice.

To be able to lead the lifestyle of choice equates to affordability and having greater financial independence.

‘Australians in 2017 define the ‘Great Australian Dream’ as the ability to have the lifestyle of their choice, and to be able to create safety and security for their family, own a home, pursue hobbies, and free up time with those they love – all without fear of regret.’

What does the phrase ‘living the dream’ mean to you?

When asked this question Australians defined the following in order of importance:

  1. Having the lifestyle of my choice – 57%
  2. Having financial freedom and independence – 54%
  3. Having safety and security – 49%
  4. Owning a home – 41%
  5. Having a family – 41%
  6. Pursuing hobbies and interests – 40%
  7. Having no regrets – 38%
  8. Freeing up time with those I love – 38%
  9. Setting myself up financially for retirement – 37%
  10. Travelling the world – 36%
  11. Having a plan for the future – 29%
  12. Completing my bucket list – 21%
  13. Excelling in my current career – 21%
  14. Having an impact on my local community – 11%
  15. Pursuing a new career – 8%
  16. Having an impact globally – 8%


With 1 in 4 Australians believing they are definitely or mostly ‘living the dream’ who are they and what has enabled them to achieve their dreams?

Strong Personal Habits

Australians living the dream are family oriented, spending more quality time with their family during the week than the average Australian.

They are five (5) times more likely to meditate or engage in spiritual activity.

Dream about the future

Australians living their dream life dream more about the future than others.

4 in 5 (82%) often or always dream about their future compared to just 61% of those who say they are not living the dream.

Plan ahead and stick to the plan

Australians who are living the dream are planners.

They are five (5) times more likely than the average Australian to plan and stick to the plans they have made (23% compared to 5%).

They are more likely to act quickly on their plans (71% compared to 41%), turning their vision for the future into reality.

High levels of self-belief

High self-belief correlates strongly with those who are living the dream.

Almost all Australians (96%) who are living the dream believe in their ability to create the life they want, compared to just 54% of those not living the dream.

Seek out advice from others

Australians who are living the dream make their financial decisions in consultation with others.

Those who are living the dream are nearly three (3) times more likely to seek advice from a financial planner when making financial decisions (24% compared to 9% of those note living the dream).

Nearly half (45%) are currently receiving or have received advice from a financial planner, compared to just 22% of those not living the dream.

Fewer regrets

Australians who believe they are living the dream are less likely to have regrets in life than those who are not living the dream life.

A quarter (26%) say they have no regrets at all.

Those that do have regrets mostly regret not saving enough (24%) or regret making poor decisions (19%).

Less financial stress

Australians who are living the dream have the lowest levels of financial stress of all Australians.

More than one in three (34%) are not at all stressed about their finances (compared to 11% of those not living the dream).

Just 9% are extremely stressed about their finances, which is true for 26% of those not living the dream.

So what’s the greatest block to living the dream?

Two of the three most significant factors that prevent us from living our dreams are financial.

Having a low bank balance is the biggest dream blocker.

Poor financial planning is a key regret.

One in five Australians believe that poor financial planning is one of their biggest financial regrets life so far (21%).

Research conducted in May 2017 showed that 79% of those who had received advice said their financial well-being had improved since engaging a financial planner (Core Data, FPA Brand Research, 2017).

For more help on ‘living the dream’, talk to a Dome Financial Adviser in Charlestown, Tamworth and Hunter Valley.

The information contained on this page is for discussion purposes only and is not intended to constitute financial product advice. It does not take into consideration any persons objectives, financial situation or needs. You should consider its appropriateness in light of your circumstances and consider seeking professional advice relevant to your individual before making a decision based on any information on this page.

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